The Texan chip maker hasn't been able to provide its arch-rival with any real headaches since it introduced its 386 chips way back in 1990 but now has a genuine contender in the K6. The K6 is a Pentium Pro-class device that AMD claims will at least match Intel's finest clock for clock. Volume availability is expected by April.
"I am absolutely convinced that we're up there at the performance level we need to attack the tier one and tier two [PC vendors]," said Richard Baker, European regional marketing manager for PC products. "On the [Pentium-class] K5, PC vendors weren't so interested in doing 'spot' products with Intel having such a stranglehold on the market. They want a company that can supply across the whole range."